From time to time, many foot and lower extremity conditions require treatment with medications.
All podiatrists utilise over the counter medications, such as anti-inflammatories, and local anaesthetic injections as part of their daily practice. Podiatrists, such as Anthony Short and Ele Lentakis, who have undergone additional training in the use of restricted Schedule 4 medicines can also prescribe or administer a range of other medications following endorsement by the Podiatry Board of Australia.
In Queensland, podiatrists with endorsement in scheduled medicines, may use of range of medications to treat foot and lower extremity complaints. These include oral antibiotics and antifungal medications for infections, cortisone injections for painful inflammatory conditions such as tendonitis, strong steroid creams for inflammatory skin conditions, and a range of other medicines that are relevant to the practice of podiatry, and the care of foot and lower extremity conditions. This saves patients from the costs and time to arrange to see a General Practitioner to prescribe what is necessary to treat the presenting problem. Often, other non-medication treatments such as orthotics, strapping, footwear changes are also advised by the podiatrist.
At this time, the cost of these medications is not covered under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme. However, our professional bodies are working hard to see that this changes so that podiatry patients are not discriminated against because of the provider who arranged the prescription. In the meantime, the costs of most of these medicines is usually under $10 per prescription through most community pharmacies.